by Geoffrey Churchman
At present the Kapiti council is busy running around trying to put out fires — huge public opposition to the $5million+ Guru Gateway and the shenanigans that have been involved with it; and now the imminent closure of the airport.
Thus it must have been a welcome opportunity to at least partially distract attention from them by seizing upon a minor row about a piece of satire written by one of our contributors and edited by Roger Childs entitled ‘the Guru and the Kaj’ (the Kapiti Taj Mahal’). put on this blog on 26 July.
This was a piece which began:
Hurry — the season’s sell out show!
Satire by Thomasina Wolfe
In the wonderful world of Kapiti a brand new building, called the Taj Mahal of the Kapiti Coast is about to rise in all its glittering $5 million splendor beside a taniwha-filled stream, with the waves literally lapping at its doorsteps. The site of the Taj (some wits have already christened it “The Kaj”) itself brings great drama as the sea levels rise and it battles, like Canute, to turn back the tide.
Reading a script that had been composed for her by Tim Power — the KCDC executives’ in-house lawyer — Cr Prvanov declared at last night’s WCB meeting that somehow because it had appeared on this website for a bit over a day, that I, yes me, was guilty of all manner of social transgressions: not only sexism, but there were “racial overtones.” Wow.
For the first time since last November the Lord Mayor of Kapiti himself showed up along with probably for the first time ever, Mr Power, and a couple of the Mayor’s media friends — David Haxton of Kapiti News and Joel Maxwell of Stuff.
But by the time this was discussed by the remaining 4 WCB members and a handful of the public circa 9:15 pm, the audience had shrunk from about 100 at the 7 pm start (most had been Ferndale residents) to about 12. The Mayor must have been disappointed.
Complaining about the satirical post was one thing, but disturbingly Prvanov condemned me for this article about chronic bullying by Mayor Gurunathan and three of his councilors.
By implication that means she must support bullying in the workplace — does that make her a fit person to be a councilor? In fact, not only does she support bullying, she has clearly indulged in it herself in my case.
As mentioned elsewhere, the toxicity between us had become palpable, and what do females at the Kapiti Council have a reputation for doing when their foe is a male? You got it. Prvanov stated “I feel extremely vulnerable in his [my] presence because of the views he holds” I don’t know what views I am supposed to hold make her feel that way. Given her propensity for aggression, it was me who felt extremely vulnerable.
The Waikanae Community Board is not the Press Council. If Cr Prvanov has a complaint about something in the media it should be with the writer and editor of an article, but certainly not the publisher. Her attacking a publisher is counter to a sacred principle — freedom of political expression by others.
The motion itself was ultra-vires — invalid — and defamatory. CEO Maxwell should not have allowed it on the agenda.